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The Effect of the Overtreatment of Diabetes

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According to research, People with diabetes, particularly those with type 1 diabetes, may have an increased risk of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) if they receive too much glucose lowering therapy. New research now warns that many people with diabetes face that risk.

In the year 2018, it was reported on a study warning that many people with type 2 diabetes may be overmonitoring their glucose levels, which may lead to the misuse of tests and supply waste.

Now, new research from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, warns that the United States and possibly other countries faces a much more dangerous problem: the overtreatment of diabetes.

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According to the study paper — which now appears in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings— many people receive too much glucose lowering therapy.

This increases a person’s risk of hypoglycemia, or abnormally low blood sugar levels.

“Hypoglycemia, or low blood glucose, is one of the most common serious adverse effects of diabetes therapy, causing both immediate and long term harm to [people] who experience it,” explains lead researcher Dr. Rozalina McCoy.

“Severe

Complications of hypoglycemia caused by diabetes overtreatment
If a person does not take action, they may have:

difficulty eating or drinking
seizures
a loss of consciousness
coma
, defined by the need for another person to help the patient treat and terminate their hypoglycemic event, is associated with increased risk of death, cardiovascular disease, cognitive impairment, falls and fractures, and poor quality of life,” she adds.

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The researchers found that in the U.S., people with diabetes often receive much more medication than their hemoglobin A1C levels would require. Hemoglobin A1C levels are a person’s average blood sugar levels over a period of around 3 months.

In the cohort they studied, this resulted in 4,774 hospital admissions and 4,804 emergency department visits in the span of 2 years.

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“Importantly, these numbers are a large underestimation of the true scope of overtreatment-induced hypoglycemic events,” warns Dr. McCoy.

Symptoms of hypoglycemia
People with mild hypoglycemia may experience the following :

hunger
tremor or trembling
sweating
shaking
a pale face
heart palpitations
rapid or irregular heart rate
dizziness and weakness
blurred vision
confusion
Severe hypoglycemia may involve:

weakness and tiredness
poor concentration
irritability and nervousness
confusion
irrational or argumentative behavior and personality changes
tingling in the mouth
coordination problems
Complications
If a person does not take action, they may have:

difficulty eating or drinking
seizures
a loss of consciousness
coma

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